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Banks are too high now - attachments/techniques to cut them down?

Discussion in 'Residential Snow Removal' started by Colonel Monk, Feb 22, 2014.

  1. Colonel Monk

    Colonel Monk Member
    Messages: 60

    Howdy Gents

    Well, this winter has proven to be an interesting one in snow removal.... For the first time in many many years, the banks are at the point where I can't throw the snow over the top, so it's closing in behind me....

    Early last week, at their highest, I ended up pushing the snow more forward with blade only slightly angled left or right, and started near the end of my push, and peeled off a little at a time and then piled it at the end of the push....

    That was alot of back and forth, forward/reverse and many passes. I was out for 4 hours where it's usually just an hour/hour-half.

    Are there any techniques you have used with your plow to cut down the bank? I tried driving along the bank with my plow up and angled, but of course that didn't work, with the plow angled toward the bank I could not reach it.....

    How about attachments? Has anyone ever attached a wing or something to plow that allows you to cut down the height of the bank?

    Thanks,

    CM

    Edit to add

    I should have mentioned - 7.5' Western Hydroturn Plow

    We have a 25hp Kubota tractor with 4' Loader - I have used this to manage the piles, but like the plow truck, it doesn't have any implement that hangs outside it's footprint..... If you now what I mean.

    I thought about the possibility of finding some heavy planks and maybe strapping some kind of wooden blade to the bucket like a motor grader or something, then I could drive along the bank and knock it back..... Don't have a welder right now so can't really fab anything....

    I could use the bucket if it was just a short driveway, but I'm guessing between my drive and my aunt's we have about 3/4 mile of wooded driveway, and it would need to be done on both sides - that's too much bucket work....

    Anyway, your ideas are welcome let me know what you think....
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2014
  2. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,926

    Time for a machine.
     
  3. Colonel Monk

    Colonel Monk Member
    Messages: 60

    Sorry, not to be thick but I don't understand.... :salute:
     
  4. goel

    goel PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,079

    He is saying hire someone with the proper machine to do the job for you.

    Or rent one.
     
  5. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,926

    Yep. Your trying to "move" snow with a plow that was not designed to do that kind of work. Your gunna tear something up. So get a machine that is designed to do that kind of work
     
  6. JTVLandscaping

    JTVLandscaping Senior Member
    Messages: 860

    That bucket tractor will do it. Just take your time.
     
  7. Big-Foot

    Big-Foot Junior Member
    Messages: 25

    Some of my neighbors thought I was nuts when I was pushing the snow 15-20' into my lawn from the beginning of winter. My piles are now 5-10' from the driveway and I'm losing ground fast but hopefully will make it until we get a few good thaws - although MN is having one of the worst and coldest winters in 4 decades.
     
  8. ServiceOnSite

    ServiceOnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 935

    Hire a front end loader and push it back or haul it off site.
     
  9. geer hed

    geer hed Senior Member
    Messages: 275

    The tractor you have will do what you want to do, but it will take time. It's like this, you can make extensions for the bucket or for your plow blade ,but they are designed to move a certain amount of material at a time, once you exceed that your done. It will take time to move the snow in smaller amounts regardless of what you use. The first thing you need to do is try to make room to put the snow, whether you stack it up or just push it back you need to make room. Then start on the edge of the pile and move it, working your way across. Yes it is time consuming especially with a small bucket, but it's better than none.
     
  10. snowplower1

    snowplower1 Senior Member
    Messages: 770

    start piling the snow in the parking spaces and then when they start complaining you say there is no where to put the snow anymore and if they would like to have it all hauled out, you make a quick buck doing it. We havent had this issue yet but we came pretty close to having no where else to put the snow this year. The warm weather this week took care of the issue!
     
  11. Colonel Monk

    Colonel Monk Member
    Messages: 60

    Gotcha, everyone.

    Well, we are definitely on a budget here... I was looking for some Do It Yourself advice...

    Just to clarify, I'm not talking about snow piles at the end of the runs.... I have plenty of room on most, and the spots where I need a little more the tractor is working fine for that. Our roads run thru a cedar swamp, and so there's only so much room to start with in the fall... I have plowed as wide as possible all winter and not closed out yet.. Just starting to close in faster than I'd like.

    We just inherited the tractor last summer from my dear departed uncle - that's a nice piece of equipment we never thought we'd have.... It's possible we could end up with a snowblower at some point for it.

    One thing I could do with the bucket, would be to open up holes in the banks every 40 feet or so..... That would give the plow somewhere to unload and should let me keep my current width for the time being...

    If any of you fellers come up with another idea let me know.... Won't happen this season, but this problem has given me some idears on how to combat it in the future.... I'm thinking an old 4ft plow blade with some angled framework and a chain binder to strap it to the bucket might be perfect to drive along the banks with bucket raised and just knock off the top 8" at a time.

    Our banks are peaked sharply, since the snow falls off the edge of the drive and into the woods/swamp. It would not take much horsepower to just knock that several inches off and into the woods so the western plow can reach it once again.

    I hear ya, geer hed and all, that our equipment wasn't designed to move massive amounts of snow all at once. This winter is teaching all of us in the northern climes that lesson again this year. I definitely realize it's got to be done just a little at a time to keep everything working.

    Thanks to all

    CM
     
  12. cotter

    cotter Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 182

    I have fabricated a mount for the bucket on my loader to where I can put a snow plow on the front of it. Works real good for pushing piles back and stacking snow to the sky if necessary. About $40 in steel, some fun with the welder and an old plow blade and I was in business. I think I have pics posted in the heavy equipment section if you search for loader plows they should come up. Also I found a site tractorbynet.com had a lot of good ideas as well.
     
  13. goel

    goel PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,079

    Did you even read the ops post. He's talking about his own driveways.
     
  14. nepatsfan

    nepatsfan Senior Member
    Messages: 727

    Why not just take the Kubota tractor and pick up the banks and push them back. Go all the way down a bucket at a time pushing the tops over. I'm not sure how long of a run it is but that's how a big machine would do it too. Just faster
     
  15. Colonel Monk

    Colonel Monk Member
    Messages: 60

    Howdy

    Yeah, that's the problem. it's about 3/4 mile of road each way, so that's alot of bucket work.... And the drive right now is about a car and a quarter wide, so not much room to maneuver...

    But, like I said above, I think I'll get a few gals diesel and try opening up the bank every 40-50 feet where it's the worst and see if giving the plow somewhere to unload snow. If I take small bites should be able to widen it a little and if it works, I'll do more of it so I'm ready for the next big storm.

    Cotter, yeah I'm a member there on tractorbynet as well. Have looked into doing a plow mount for Kubota, wasn't sure if the old Jeep was still in plowing order. It is, mostly - the brakes don't work but it still plows.

    I'm going to keep my eyes peeled for a smaller blade, probably like a 6 footer with manual pivot. If I slid the plow to the right side of center so it hangs outside the tractor's tires, I think I could take 8" or so off the top of a tall bank pretty easy since they are narrow on top. Would be a pretty cool rig for sure.

    Talking to other guys they have said that using only tractor instead of bigger more powerful plow truck will make more work out of general plowing and it will take longer. This is true, I can plow the driveway faster than the top speed of the kubota..... But the kubota with loader can do some really cool things to move snow you just can't do with regular plow.

    If this driveway was in a field, I could have just started double/triple wide and given up my ground as we got more snow, but it's a wooded gravel drive thru the swamp - so you can't go wider than the road which is 10 maybe 12 feet wide between trees.

    I'll make her work for now, but I'm thinking a small plow for such work on bucket would be awesome.

    CM
     
  16. geer hed

    geer hed Senior Member
    Messages: 275

    Here's something for thought, If you get a small blade, and mount it so that it is offset to the side, you can keep the tractor more to the center of the driveway, yet push the snow back as you go. The only thing you have to be carefull of is the further you offset the blade the easier it will want to spin the tractor sideways. We have put snowplows on backhoes already with much success. Simply welded 2 sets of ears on the inside bottom of the bucket to mount the plow same as if it were on a truck, welded a hook at the top of the bucket for the lift chain. On one hoe it even had plumbing for auxiliary hydraulics which we ran hoses to and even had power angle. This can be very usefull for widening. and if you only take about 6" or so at a time this should work well for you, it just means more trips back and forth, but it should still be faster than one bucket at a time.

    The idea if making dump spots to empty the blade can help, but you need them spaced so the blade empties out before it starts to kick it out the other side, otherwise your defeating the purpose.
     
  17. Colonel Monk

    Colonel Monk Member
    Messages: 60

    Yeah, that's the idea! Most of the plows adapted to bucket mounts use a simple u-shaped piece of steel welded to plow frame that hooks on the lip of the bucket. The you use a chain and binders to strap them to bucket. If I did one of these and pulled the plow to the right side of center, I'd have the blade hanging over the tires, and could just drive down the road with plow elevated and topple the banks into the woods.

    Can't make it happen for this year on account of funds, but should be able to make it happen for next year. I've seen old 6 ft jeep plows for sale without hydros for 100-200 bucks.

    Agreed on the dump spots. I'll have to figure out the right combo of spacing and amount of snow I bite off to make sure it's a clean plow.

    CM
     
  18. Mr.Markus

    Mr.Markus PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,157

    I've got a few swampy cedar lanes that every now and then need to be blown back. I would find a good used 5-6 ft single auger blower (-$1000) for that Kubota and continue the way you are... use it when you need to. I don't like to mix it up on drives alternating plowing and blowing but the plowing goes faster than the blowing for most of it and I know you're probably up against trees too, so the blower is a better choise.
     
  19. Colonel Monk

    Colonel Monk Member
    Messages: 60

    Thanks Markus. Yeah, that's true, I think that we really could use a blower, but living just off a lake and not far from Lake Michigan, the wind and weather is pretty miserable on the tractor as a primary snow removal tool. I do use it quite a bit, but not when it's storming hard.
     
  20. RLM

    RLM PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,270

    Your on the right track with the tractor pushing holes in the bank. We have even backed int driveways at one HOA and pushed banks back with trucks as long as you can do it before they freeze up and have enough room to get 90 degrees to them it goes pretty quick.